Eighty-three communities across New York state will receive awards of approximately $100,000 each to support community microgrid projects, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced. The awards were granted as part of the NY Prize microgrid competition to support community-based power under Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision strategy.
The NY Prize microgrid competition was announced by Governor Cuomo last August and was administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The competition generated proposals from more than 130 cities, villages, towns and municipalities.
Award recipients include local governments, community organizations, non-profit entities, for-profit companies and municipally owned utilities. All winning projects must be integrated into utility networks and serve multiple customers, including at least one “critical infrastructure” customer, such as a hospital, police station, fire station or water treatment facility.
Over the next six to eight months, the Stage 1 award winners will assess the technical, operational and financial feasibility of their proposed community microgrid. These studies will uncover the most favorable technical configurations, as well as immediate opportunities for energy efficiency and distributed energy installations. Once the studies are completed, communities can compete for further support from NY Prize or pursue the distributed energy resource opportunities uncovered in their feasibility study.
The 83 communities receiving support for feasibility studies may choose to apply for detailed engineering support in Stage 2 of the competition. NYSERDA will also work with third parties and the State’s utilities to provide access to existing clean energy programs and services for communities that do not receive NY Prize support. In Stage 3, the final competition stage, NY Prize funding will be made available for project construction; both Stage 2 and 3 will involve a cost-share.